Certificate of acceptance

​​​​​​​​A certificate of acceptance is a new tool in the Building Act 2004 and is a way to partially-legitimise unconsented building work. 

A certificate of acceptance is a document from Council that states that it has reasonable grounds to believe that specified building work complies with the building code. An application can be made if building work has taken place after 1 July 1992 and:

  • An owner or previous owner carried out or arranged building work without consent (but a consent should have been obtained); or
  • Where work has been carried out urgently in accordance with Section 42 of the Building Act 2004.

The certificate may be qualified to identify parts that could not be inspected by the Council, in which case the Council's liability is limited to the extent that it was able to inspect. It may also exclude work that does not comply or where there is not enough evidence that it complies. Certificates of acceptance are based on the Building Code at the time the application is made rather than what was in place at the time a building consent was granted, should have been applied for, or when the work was actually carried out.

The fact that a certificate of acceptance can be issued does not relieve a building owner from the requirement to obtain a building consent for their building work. Council still has the ability to issue a notice to fix and to prosecute.

Page reviewed: 16 May 2016 11:26am